2nd November

Three Yet One

As Jesus came up out of the water he saw heaven opening and the Spirit coming down on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my dearly loved Son, I am so pleased with you. Mark 1: 10, 11

These verses show us the Trinity. The Father in the form of a voice. The Son in the form of Jesus. The Spirit in the form of a dove.
When Irenaeus was asked to explain the Trinity he pointed to a person’s hands. There is more than one hand, but only one person. On a hand there are several fingers, but only the one hand.
The Celtic Christians could see pointers to the nature of God as three Persons in the creation around them, too, as the legend of Patrick picking up a three leafed shamrock to explain the Trinity illustrates.

Three joints in the finger, but only one finger fair
Three leaves of the shamrock yet only one shamrock to wear
Frost, snowflakes and ice, yet all in water their origin share
Three Persons in God; to one God alone we make prayer.
Traditional Irish

Sometimes the sun has been used as an illustration of the Trinity. There is the sun itself, which the human eye cannot directly look at; there is a single ray that we can see at a particular time and place; and there is the sun’s warmth which radiates.

God is at once infinite solitude (one nature) and perfect society (three persons); one infinite love in three subsistent relations.
Thomas Merton
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The Celtic Christians could see pointers to the nature of God as three Persons in the creation around them, too, as the legend of Patrick picking up a three leafed shamrock to explain the Trinity illustrates.

Three joints in the finger, but only one finger fair
Three leaves of the shamrock yet only one shamrock to wear
Frost, snowflakes and ice, yet all in water their origin share
Three Persons in God; to one God alone we make prayer.
Traditional Irish

Sometimes the sun has been used as an illustration of the Trinity. There is the sun itself, which the human eye cannot directly look at; there is a single ray that we can see at a particular time and place; and there is the sun’s warmth which radiates.

The Three who are over my head,
The Three who are under my tread.
The Three who are over me here,
The Three who are over me there.
The Three who in heaven do dwell,
The Three in the great ocean swell.
Pervading Three, O be with me,
Pervading Three, O be with me.
Carmina Gadelica

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